Ohio Attorney General Cordray Dismisses Lead Paint Lawsuit

By February 6, 2009Briefly Legal

The right decision, Mr. Attorney General, abiding by the intent of the law and protecting the taxpayers in the process.


(COLUMBUS, Ohio) – After careful consideration, Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray today voluntarily dismissed the lead paint lawsuit filed by former Attorney General Marc Dann in April 2007. This lawsuit was pending in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas against ten paint manufacturers and was focused on abatement of lead paint throughout Ohio.

“I understand and strongly agree that exposure to lead paint is a very real problem,” said Attorney General Cordray. “But I also know that not every problem can be solved by a lawsuit.” After assessing the law, facts, and adverse legal rulings in these types of cases nationally, the Attorney General concluded that those at risk – and Ohio’s economy – would be best served by focusing on how public/private partnerships can be enhanced to address any existing problems with lead paint exposure.

The Rhode Island Supreme Court last year dismissed the state’s lawsuit against paint manufacturers, and the city of Columbus, Ohio, quickly dropped its public nuisance suit afterward. We always suspected the winner of the AG’s race to replace the disgraced and resigned Marc Dann would get around to dropping the state’s lawsuit once the political environment settled down. And as we noted last month, “Richard Cordray was elected last November, and he bears no responsibility for having brought the suit. He would bear the responsibility for additional legal costs if he continues the suit in the face of clear evidence it will fail in the courts.”

So, good legal move and good political move, Mr. AG.

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